Baseball Honors Lou Gehrig

July 4, 2009 at 8:38 pm (Baseball, Life & Death)

On this date, 70 years ago, Lou Gehrig gave his farewell speech at Yankee Stadium. My late mother, Vivian, was in attendance. She remembered, years later, that there wasn’t a dry eye in the house… including Lou’s.


Today, Baseball stopped and paid tribute.

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James “Dusty” Rhodes, Woild Serious Hero, Passes Away At 82

June 19, 2009 at 10:57 pm (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Giants)

His truly remarkable feets in the 1954 Fall Classic weren’t what defined the life of Mr. Rhodes. After his passing, earlier this week, former teammates and Hall Of Famers Monte Irvin and Willie Mays both agreed that Dusty was a “brother to we Afro-Americans.” Given the times they played together, where Dusty was born and raised, and that these were the players keeping him on the bench a great deal of the time, I’m concluding that Jim Rhodes was a great guy.
My friend and fellow New York Giants fan Gary Brown knew him well, first as a fan, and later as a loving friend. Gary describes Rhodes as a “funny, gregarious, story teller who left him in stiches.” He’s devestated by the loss, as is his loving partner Gloria. My condolences to them, and the entire New York Giants family.

Dusty Rhodes card

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Ted Kennedy, Before You Kick It…

June 11, 2009 at 12:32 am (Life & Death, News & Politics, Unzipped Thoughts)

… riddle me this:

Do you ever check in with Gwynn, Mary Jo Kopechne’s mom? Just wondering. It’s been years, and now that you, too, are in pain…

Hey, I hope that didn’t sound mean spirited, given your recent brain troubles [all that Kennedy inbreeding at work?], but I’ll bet you a bottle of your evil father’s smuggled Scotch [I’ll put up a Bill Buckner baseball card] that MJ is mentioned in the first paragraph of your obituary. Nice legacy, meat.

mary jo

Aside, I understand that some good is coming of all of this. You seem to be loosing some of that wall of flesh that precedes and follows you into a room. Just in time for spring boating, and all the easier to carry on a hot summers day.

Over and out, Camelot.

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Lasik Surgery A PED For Baseball?

April 25, 2009 at 4:39 pm (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Mets, Unzipped Thoughts)

Many have improved their vision, dramatically. Some, not so. Here’s what I read today about a very good young ballplayer.

CINCINNATI– Brian McCann has spent the past couple weeks frustrated by the fact that he’s had constant blurred vision in his left eye. The Braves All-Star catcher will spend the next two weeks hoping to find the proper solution.

The Braves announced on Saturday morning that they’ve placed McCann on the 15-day disabled list with what they’ve termed a left eye infection. With the move made retroactive to Thursday, the 25-year-old catcher will be eligible for activation for the May 8 series opener in Philadelphia.

“I hate going on the DL,” McCann said. “That’s the last thing I was going to do. But I feel like it’s something that’s going to get me back to seeing the baseball and being able to perform at this level.”

McCann is hopeful that he can regain his optimal vision by simply repeating the Lasik surgical procedure that he first underwent after the 2007 season. But he’s conscious of the fact that he might need to do more than simply correct the vision in his left eye.

While dealing with this blurriness since Opening Day, McCann has tried multiple remedies, but eye drops, an antibiotic ointment and multiple contact lenses haven’t proven to be unsuccessful in solving the problem.

McCann is hoping to find more clarity about his situation when he visits Dr. Alan Kozarsky in Atlanta on Monday. Kozarsky performed the initial Lasik procedure on the catcher two years ago.

Why he chooses to go back to the same neck, is what really interests me. Are the magazines in the waiting room current? Does the Doctor see him in a timely manner? Do the medical staff handle all the insurance forms? Does he think 50% is a high success rate in the “eye fixin’ biz?”

My advice to Brian: Get your arse up to New Yawk and make an appointment with a Doc named Myron, Seymour, or Bernie… then it would be back to the room with a bag of good Columbian Boo, a six pack o’ brew, and some great pizza. Then you can practice playing “peek-a-boo” with the good eye while ravaging the mini bar, and trying to decode the porn channel. Remember that a $500 hooker with a Green Card automatically turns into a $50 hooker without a Green Card. Don’t fall in love.

Aside that your extended stay on the disabled list increases the chances of the Mets winning the division [I just hope that they don’t find a way to blow it ,in spite of your misfortune], I wish you a speedy recovery… I guess. :-)

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Les Keiter, RIP

April 20, 2009 at 12:08 pm (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Giants)

Baseball has mourned the passing of a number of their [our] own in the past few weeks, among them Less Keiter. He was the announcer who recreated Giants baseball broadcasts when they carpetbagged to San Francisco. It made the loss of a beloved team, to this eleven year old kid, more easily bearable. “It’s off the wall and Willie rounds first, with triple on his mind…” All done via ticker tape from NYC studios, while the New Yawk Jints were calling SF their home.

Brings to mind that a fellow named Ron Reagan had a similar job with Cubs, years earlier. Ron turned out to be President of the United States, but Les never had to schtupp Nancy Reagan, and he later got to announce the Knicks… Tie, Les wins in “sudden death overtime.”


Here’s a link to his [certainly more formal] NY Times obituary.

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Herman Franks, Yet Another Leo Disciple, Passes

April 1, 2009 at 4:16 pm (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Giants)

It’s been a very sad week for we few remaining New York Giants fans. Earlier, Whitey Lockman passed, and now Herman Franks. They were two of the many Leo Durocher managed players to go on to manage, themselves, in the Big Leagues.

I’ll remember that it was Franks, a real estate mogul, who helped Willie Mays get his financial “stuff” together back in the day. Here’s picture of them in Santurce..


… and, more importantly, who I was with on that warm Sacramento night when I heard on the radio that Charlie Fox had replaced him as manager of the SF Giants. Here’s a picture of Herman in his playing . I wish I had one of the lovely and provocative Dorit, in our playing days…


… I do, however, have a list of the 49 surviving players who donned the uniform of the

New York Giants

Tommy Henrich- 2/26/1910 (Coach 1957)
Lonny Frey- 8/23/1910 (1948)
Monte Irvin- 2/25/1919 (1949-1955)
Buddy Blattner-2/8/1920 (1946-1948)
Larry Jansen- 7/16/1920 (1947-1954; Coach 1954)
Artie Wilson- 10/28/1920 (1951)
Charlie Mead- 4/29/1921 (1943-1945)
Les Layton- 11/18/1921 (1948)
Alvin Dark- 1/7/1922 (1950-1956)
Gil Coan- 5/18/1922 (1955)
Clint Hartung- 8/10/1922 (1947-1952)
Hub Andrews- 8/31/1922 (1947-1948)
Red Schoendienst- 2/2/1923 (1956-1957)
Chuck Diering- 2/5/1923 (1952)
Bobby Thomson- 10/25/1923 (1946-1953; 1957)
Jack Lohrke- 2/25/1924 (1947-1951)
Hal Bamberger- 10/29/1924 (1948)
Wayne Terwilliger- 6/27/1925 (1955-1956)
Windy McCall- 7/18/1925 (1954-1957)
Joe Garagiola-2/12/1926 (1954)
Harvey Gentry- 5/27/1926 (1954)
Mario Picone- 7/5/1926 (1947, 1952, 1954)
George Spencer- 7/7/1926 (1950-1955)
Rudy Rufer- 10/28/1926 (1949-1950)
Don Mueller- 4/14/1927 (1948-1957)
Dusty Rhodes- 5/13/1927 (1952-1957)
Jack Harshman- 7/12/1927 (1952)
Billy Gardner- 7/19/1927 (1954-1955)
Davey Williams- 11/2/1927 (1949, 1951-1955; Coach 1956-1957)
Stu Miller- 12/26/1927- (1957)
Valmy Thomas- 10/21/1928 (1957)
Al Worthington- 2/5/1929 (1953- 1954;1956-1957)
Daryl Spencer- 7/13/1929 (1952-1953; 1956-1957)
Bill Taylor-12/30/1929 (1954-1957)
Joe Margoneri- 1/13/1930 (1956-1957)
Ron Samford- 2/28/1930 (1954)
Johnny Antonelli-4/12/1930 (1954-1957)
Pete Burnside-7/2/1930 (1955, 1957)
Foster Castleman- 1/1/1931 (1954-1957)
Willie Mays- 5/6/1931-(1951-1952; 1954-1957)
Ray Crone- 8/7/1931 (1957)
Gail Harris- 10/15/1931 (1955-1957)
Ed Bressoud- 5/2/1932 (1956-1957)
Ozzie Virgil,Sr.- 5/17/1933 (1956-1957)
Roy Wright- 9/26/1933 (1956)
Joe Amalfitano- 1/23/1934 (1954-1955)
Bill White-1/28/1934 (1956)
Jackie Brandt- 4/28/1934 (1956)
Mike McCormick-9/29/1938 (1956-1957)

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Whitey Lockman, RIP

March 19, 2009 at 6:58 pm (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Giants)

Carroll “Whitey” Lockman, whose first nickname was “Pickles,” passed away. He was the steady first baseman of my boyhood team, the New York Giants.

“Lockman, with not too big a lead at second, but he’ll be running like the wind if Thomson hits one…”

I’m deeply saddened.

Here are some pictures:

Obit Lockman



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RIP, Sonia/Soda [1993-2009]

March 11, 2009 at 4:12 pm (Life & Death)


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Stay Team, Stay…

March 6, 2009 at 8:43 pm (Baseball, Life & Death, New York Giants)

It’s been 50+ years and fewer and fewer of us are still around to grief the death, in 1957, of National League Baseball in New York City. It’s reincarnation in 1962, in the form of my now beloved New York Mets, is a poor substitute [if, for no other reason, the loss of the natural rivalry] for the loss of the New York Giants and the Brooklyn Dodgers. Yet another book comes out this summer about the departure west of these two great franchises. “After Many A Summer,” by Robert Murphy. I’ll be a readin’.


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My Nomadic Habitat

March 3, 2009 at 9:12 pm (Life & Death)










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